Southern California

This page is for the Greater LA Area.  San Diego and Santa Cruz has their own pages and the general California Page is for Northern California including San Francisco

Hanging at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk 

San Diego has its own page now.

 Notice anything outdated or missing?  Please email me at evan @ Los Angeles, CA


 For Music Listings, the west coaster Trashy Traveler is Mr. Hollywood.  The Local Alternative Weeklies for Los Angeles are the LA WEEKLY and The LA New Times.  The New Times is quite useless.  There is also the Campus Circle.  The Orange County Area has the OC Weekly.
Find out about free booze at
My open bar. Cool event listings at Flavorpill. As far as LA…
The quest for the ultimate taco can be found at THE GREAT TACO HUNT

Find some old, one of a kind venues at LA Time Machines.

When in town, check for performances by the sketch comedy troupe the Naked Apes.

Mod Parties-Club Soulside, Mind Machine
Rockabilly promoters-Black Cat EntertainmentBrando Von BadsvilleSpikes barRonnie Macks Barn DanceDj Rockin Vic

a few time machine bars listed here.

Café-Club Fais Do-Do, 5257 W. Adams Blvd.Los Angeles, CA 90016 323.931.4636 Home to soul, mod and ska parties
The No Name bar was in the movie Swingers.  The tiny joint that you have to walk down an alley and go in an unmarked door.  Fairly small, VERY dark and you can smoke. (editors note: Though they think of themselves as liberals, California is a FASCIST STATE and you may get a ticket if you get caught smoking in a bar or restaurant, even if everyone there says its okay)

Idle Hour-Fancy cocktail lounge in a Barrel shaped building.  Better get there when they open as it gets crowded 4824 Vineland Ave, Los Angeles, CA 91601 daily til 2AM (818) 980-5604

The Formosa Cafe.  It was in the LA Confidential “Lana Turner” scene.  Two bars, old school Hollywood with lots of hot chicks.  Outside roof bar.  Good martinis.

Sunset Trocadero Lounge-Hot spot of the moment you can actually get into.-8280 Sunset Blvd
West Hollywood, CA on the Sunset Strip.  (323) 656-7161



Tiki-Ti-Tiki bar serving all kinds of tiki drinks. Might want to check the website before you go to find out what you want.4427 Sunset Blvd.Hollywood (Los Angeles), California 90027 (323) 669-9381, (recording during non-operating hours) Call first as they go on long vacations. historic Hollywood tiki founded in 1961.
Don the Beachcomber-considered the country’s first tiki bar, and creator of the Zombie.
16278 Pacific Coast Highway, Huntington Beach
Trader Sams-1150 Magic Way, Disneyland Hotel, Anaheim, (714) 781-3463
The Purple Orchid-Near LAX in El Segundo. With Occasional bands and Burlesque- 221 Richmond Street in El Segundo
Tiki No-opened in 2010-4657 Lankershim Boulevard in North Hollywood, (818) 766-0116
Trader Vic’s-One of a mini chain. The one in Oakland claims to have invented the Mai Tai. at The Beverly Hilton is located at 9876 Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills, (310) 274-7777
Tonga Hut Tiki Lounge-since 1958, happy hour everyday from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. with $3 well drinks and shots, and $2 Miller Lite and PBRs. Surf Rock DJs on Sundays-12808 Victory Boulevard, North Hollywood, (818) 769-0708

Swing Dancing-

Joe’s Great American Bar & Grill-4311 W Magnolia Blvd, Burbank, CA 91505
(818) 729-0805 Venue with weekly swing dance lessons

Apple Pan-Old fashioned Burger joint and fresh pies- 10801 W Pico Blvd ,Los Angeles, CA

The Addiction Bistro…Burgers,  Hot Dogs, Sausage, Chili …408 N La Cienega Blvd  West Hollywood, CA 90048
(323) 203-1793 Formerly known as chili addiction

Pinks Hot Dogs-709 N. LaBrea Blvd., Hollywood, CA 323-931-4223-In the land of health food, the chili dog is king.
Clifton’s Cafeteria-648 S Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90014, (213) 627-1673-old timey cafeteria with waterfalls inside and such.
Phillipes-1001 N. Alameda St., Los Angeles, Home of the original french dip sandwich in roast pork, roast beef and roast lamb.  Mmm.
Clementine-1567 Barry Avenue off Santa Monica Blvd. 310-552-1080.  Soups, sandwiches, homemade baked goods like ginger snaps.  They even have hot chocolate made with HOMEMADE marshmallows.
Bahooka, 501 N. Rosemead Blvd., Rosemead, CA, 818-285-1241.  Another Tiki Bar with a polynesian restaurant.
Mels Drive in–  Multiple locations of this 24 hour diner with classic food
Randys Donuts-the big giant famous donut-310.645.4707, 805 West Manchester Avenue , Inglewood CA 90301, near the airport
Stans Donuts-gourmet donut shop in westwood.  Seen on food network. original store in Westwood Village,  10948 Weyburn Avenue. (310) 208-8660
Pantry Cafe the Original-877 S Figueroa St, Los Angeles, CA 90017-2507
(213) 972-9279 Diner open 24/7 always.  no locks on the doors
Langers Deli-Pastrami, Corned beef mega old timey deli restaurant.on the southwest corner of 7th and Alvarado Streets, diagonally across from MacArthur Park
Canter’s Delicatessen and Restaurant, 24/7 -419 North Fairfax Avenue
Los Angeles, California 90036 (323) 651-2030 Canter’s is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and on all holidays except Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. The Kibbitz Room Lounge is open from 10:00am-1:40am daily.  They also have a location in Las Vegas

The Hat, World Famous Pastrami-Specializing in pastrami sandwiches locations in Los Angeles and Orange counties. 1 W Valley Blvd, Alhambra, CA 91801
(626) 282-0140 Try a pastrami topped burger or a tamale

Jim’s Burgers – 1901 E 1st St, Los Angeles, CA 90033 (323) 266-3886-burgers, pastrami, tacos.  Signs probably better than the food but pic worthy.

Marty’s Hamburger Stand-10558 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90064 (310) 836-6944 Chili Cheeseburgers, home of the Combos, combo burger, meaning burger patty AND hot dog

Tommys Chili Burgers-2575 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA  and other locations.  (213) 389-9060  Chili burgers, chili cheese fries and tamales since the 40s

Brats Brothers Gourmet Grill-(818) 986-4020 Sherman Oaks , 13456 Ventura Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 91423  they make 23 at last count types of brats and crazy tater tots
Irv’s Burgers-New Address, 7998 Santa Monica Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90046
(323) 650-2456
Johnnies Pastrami-4017 South Sepulveda Blvd., (Between Washington Blvd. and Washington Place)Culver City, CA 90230 Tel: (310) 397.6654  Not to be confused with the Johnnys Pastrami of LA.  This is actually JOhnnies French Dip Pastrami. Also chili dogs and more.

Johnny’s Pastrami. on Adams”. also known as Johnny’s Hot Dog Stand-4331 W Adams Blvd,Los Angeles, CA 90018

Musso and Frank Grill -6667 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028 (323) 467-7788 old fashioned fancy steak joint.  First timers should request the “new” side circa 50s.  A specialty is the “ground beef sandwich”

Pacific Dining Car-24 hour steakhouse!  In Downtown Los Angeles 1310 West 6th Street , Los Angeles, CA 90017-not cheap.  Not even close to cheap.   In an old dining car though.

Yang Chow Restaurant-with three locations throughout Southern California, 819 N Broadway  Los Angeles, CA 90012 (213) 625-0811 famous for their slippery shrimp.



Art/Performance Space-

The Vex Arts-5240 Alhambra Ave  Los Angeles, CA 90032 (323) 221-0971-all ages venue

HM157-3110 N. Broadway Avenue, Lincoln Heights, CA 90031

Resident DTLA-428 S Hewitt St, Los Angeles, CA 90013


Live Music-

Artsy/Indie/Punk rock shows are at the Smell.

Check  Golden Voice for touring band info.  Also check this guys CLUB CALENDER.
Largo, 432 N. Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles, reservations: 323.852.1073
Spaceland-1717 Silver Lake Blvd, Silverlake CA.  In the Silverlake area of LA, this is where all the cool bands play.  Check out FONDA.
The Fonda Theatre -historic 1920’s venue catering to all genres of live musicon Hollywood Blvd. in Hollywood, CA.
Cafe Fais Do-Do-5257 West Adams Blvd. Los Angeles,   CA 90016    (323) 954-8080
Troubadour-9081 Santa Monica Blvd. @ Doheny • 310.276.6168
Key Club-9039 Sunset Blvd.
Knitting Factory Hollywood-LA branch of this NYC Club. 7021 Hollywood Blvd.
Mr. T’s Bowl– 5621 1/2  Figueroa Highland Park 90042 323-256-7561
14 Below-1348 14th Street, corner of Santa Monica. 310-451-5040-recent acts here include Dave Wakeling and the Zen Tricksters.
The Redwood Bar & Grill-316 W. 2nd St. Los Angeles, CA. 90012 213.680.2600.

The ECHO and Echoplex -Echo park club–1154 Glendale Boulevard  Los Angeles, CA 90026 (213) 413-8200
The Garage-4519 Santa Monica Blvd at Virgil. 323-662-6802-Punk rock haven.
The Gig-2 venues around town with local acts.
Hully Gully-9559 imperial hwy.downey, ca (los angeles)714.396.6314
The Roxy-9009 Sunset blvd-all ages
Silverlake Lounge-2906 Sunset Blvd at the intersection of Sunset and Parkman Ave

Spike’s & Billiard Bars -7813 Garvey Ave Rosemead, CA 91770 Lots of great shows including cramps tributes and good punk stuff.

Three Clubs-1123 n. Vine St, Los Angeles, CA 90038 (323) 462-6441-was a classic martini bar that was in the movie swingers, now a multi-purpose space with bands, burlesque and more
The Viper Room-yep, that viper room.-8852 Sunset Blvd.
Whiskey A go go-8901 Sunset Blvd.
The Ackerman Grand Ballroom of UCLA host some touring acts.
The Wiltern Theater and El Rey Theatres have larger acts.

Way out in the area known as Upland, The Wire-247 N 2nd Avenue, Upland, CA 91786
Anaheim Live Music-
Chain Reaction -1652 West Lincoln Avenue, Anaheim, CA  (714) 635-6067 all ages
Santa Ana area-Koo’s Cafe-non profit arts center/all ages band venue/coffeeshop.  Lots of great shows here.


Record Stores

Fingerprints-420 E 4th St, Long Beach, CA 90802 (562) 433-4996  Lots of live instores too
Rhino Records, 1720 Westwood Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90024
Amoeba Records-the great SF indie store comes to LA.  6400 Sunset Blvd.-323-245-6400

Permanent Records -5116 York Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90042 (323) 739-6141
LA Suburb Record Stores-
Bionic Records-420 E 4th St, Long Beach, CA 90802 (562) 433-4996
Mad Platter-1223 University Ave, Riverside
Salzers Music-5777 Valentine Road-Ventura


The Unusual-
Keep your eyes peeled for the Girls Guitar Club, kind of like a Tenacious D thing.

For Dance Clubs, check Club Planet for guestlist info.

Dance Club Links-Double check dance clubs, they go out of style of business quickly
Club Cherry-Friday nights at Vinyl-1650 Schrader
ELECTRICK 2500 Riverside Dr. in Silverlake        323-993-6075
Sinamatic-Saturdays at Club 7969-7969 Santa Monica Blvd.

The Unusual-
The Los Angeles Cacophony Society puts on unusual events that are frequently open to the public.
Cinespace is a bar and screening room with food.  323.817.FILM

Area Amusement Parks
Disneyland-1313 Harbor Boulevard, Anaheim, CA (714) 999-4565-I know its obvious, but this park has a retro feel that its sister parks don’t have.  There is the very trippy Alice in Wonderland ride as well as the great Matterhorn, which doesn’t get the credit it deserves as the fantastic coaster that it is.  It’s the first steel tracked coaster ever.  Located right next door is Disney’s California Adventure, a park aimed at families with older children.
Knott’s Berry Farm-8039 Beach Blvd, Buena Park, CA (714) 220-5200
Legoland-Carlsbad, California (760) 918-5346-If only it were like the Simpsons episode.
Pacific Park-380 Santa Monica Pier, Santa Monica, CA (310) 260-8744
Scandia Fun Center-1155 South Wanamaker Avenue, Ontario, CA (909) 390-3092-35 miles east of LA. Has one big and one small coaster.
Six Flags Magic Mountain-26101 Magic Mountain Parkway, Valencia, CA (661) 255-4100-Depending on who you ask, this park may have the most rollercoasters ANYWHERE.

The old and newly discovered hotspot.  Sort of an East Village of LA.  (though Chung King Road in Chinatown is also coming up).  In addition to Spaceland and Garage music clubs you will find:
La Luz de Jesus Gallery- 4633 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles, (323)663-0122-Hip gallery/store with one of the wildest show opening parties each month.
The Dresden-1760 N Vermont Ave  Los Angeles  (323) 665-4294-Martini lounge featured in Swingers.
Y-que Trading Post-1770 N Vermont Ave  Los Angeles  (323) 664-0021-one of those wierd gift shops.
Good Luck Bar-1514 Hillhurst Ave  Los Angeles  (323) 666-3524-Dive bar designed to look like a bad chinese restaurant.
Tiki Ti-4427 W Sunset Blvd  Los Angeles  (323) 669-9381-The place to be.  Exactly what it sounds like. Tiny.
Smog Cutter-864 N Virgil Ave  Los Angeles  (323) 660-4626-Loud Karaoke bar.
Millie’s-3524 W Sunset Blvd  Los Angeles  (323) 664-0404-Messy and spicy homestyle food.
Netty’s-1700 Silver Lake Blvd  Los Angeles  (323) 662-8655-more good eats in a former plant store.
Back Door -1710 Silver Lake Blvd., Los Angeles (323)662-7927-homemade ding dongs.

Anaheim, CA

Mama Cozzas-2170 W Ball Rd, Anaheim, CA 92804(714) 635-0063-45 year old red sauce italian joint near Disneyland.  Featured on triple d

Burbank, CA (Greater LA)

Eats-Chili John’s – 2018 W Burbank Blvd, Burbank, CA 91506 -Sunday Closed, Daily 11AM–7PM (818) 846-3611 Awesome awesome awesome chili parlor related to the one in Green bay in a classic old roadside building.

Smoke House Restaurant -4420 Lakeside Dr, Burbank, CA 91505
Hours: Open today · Vintage dark wood steakhouse since 1946 with “the worlds greatest garlic bread” (818) 845-3731


Safari Inn – 1911 W Olive Ave, Burbank, CA 91506 (818) 845-8586-Revamped vintage hotel with cool sign.  140 per night.

The Tangerine Hotel : 3901 W Riverside Dr, Burbank, CA 91505  (818) 843-1121-Modern rooms in a retro hotel.  180 per night

Costa Mesa, CA (near Long Beach and LA)

Live Music
Detroit Bar-843 w. 19th street, Costa Mesa CA 92627 Recent bands that have played here are the hold steady and Persephones Bees

Fullerton, CA (Near Aneheim)Record Store/Label-

BURGER RECORDS-645a S. State College Blvd. Fullerton, CA 92831 • PHONE: 714-447-4280 • Open 11am to 9pm everyday. FULLERTON, CA.

Venue-The Slidebar Rock-N-Roll Kitchen-122 E Commonwealth Ave, Fullerton, CA 92832 (714) 871-2233 Mostly Tribute acts but occasionally someone great comes through

Santa Ana, CA

Live Music Venue

Observatory-3503 S. Harbor Blvd., Santa Ana, CA. 714.957.0600 

Montclair, CA
Drive In
Mission Tiki Drive-In-4407 State St, Montclair, CA – (909) 628-0511

Northridge, CA
Brents Deli-19565 Parthenia St, Northridge, CA – (818) 886-5679 Authentic NY style deli.  Corned beef specialty

Venice, CA

Eats-Robin Rose Ice Cream and Traffic School-unique flavors: rose petal, rasberry truffle chocolate, bailey’s cream- 215 Rose Ave, Venice, CA 90293, (310) 399-1774
Baby Blues BBQ • 444 Lincoln Bl. Venice CA 90291, 310 396-7675


Fountain Valley, CA
Paul’s Coffee Shop – 16947 Bushard St, Fountain Valley, CA 92708 (714) 965-3643 Food served mess hall style on metal plates. Famous for SOS and pork steak.

Gardenia, CA

Eats-Jay Bees BBQ– 15911 Avalon Blvd, Gardena Ca. Closed Sunday. 310-532-1064.  BBQ in CA from a relative of the Famous Neelys of Mempis’ interstate bbq.

Santa Monica, CA

Eats-Fathers Office, 1018 Montana Avenue, Santa Monica, CA 90403  (310) 736-222-restaurant/bar featuring the office burger, voted best burger in ameria by the today show, on an oblong roll with two kinds of cheese, carmelized bacon and onions and fancy greens.


Long Beach, CA

Venue-Alex’s Bar, 2913 E. Anaheim St. (Next to the Auto Zone, entrance in the back) Long Beach, CA 90804 562-434-8292 Pasadena

Pike Restaurant & Bar -1836 E 4th St, Long Beach, CA 90802 (562) 437-4453-If you have one stop in Long Beach it should definitely be Chris Reese of Social Distortion’s joint

The Artists Inn and Cottage-1038 Magnolia Street, South Pasadena, CA 626-799-5668.  In the 100-200 dollar a night range but they have suites decorated in the style of different artists like Van Gogh and Picasso

Yujean Kang-67 North Raymond Avenue near Colorado, Pasadena, 626-585-0855-Said to be one of the best chinese spots in all of LA.
Pie n’ Burger-913 East California Blvd. 626-795-1123-Just what it sounds like, diner with pies and burgers.



The Hood Bar and Pizzeria 74360 CA-111 Palm Desert, CA 92260 “The most happening venue in the low desert”
Palm Springs, CA
Tiki Caliente annual Tiki Event around May.
Sherman’s Deli & Bakery-401 E Tahquitz Canyon Way, Palm Springs, CA – (760) 325-1199
Caliente Tropics Hotel-411 E. Palm Canyon Dr,Palm Springs, CA 92264-Cool tiki hotel, original home of Tiki Oasis
Riviera Palm Springs -Riviera Palm Springs Resort & Spa is a luxury Palm Springs hotel featuring Mid-century-modern design and lavish suites with incredible mountain views.
1600 N Indian Canyon Dr, Palm Springs, CA 92262 (760) 327-8311 Not outrageously priced.  
Orbit In Hotel-562 W Arenas Rd, Palm Springs, CA ?, (760) 323-3585  Lots of themed rooms, like the Rat Pack Room
Santa Maria, California
Santa Maria is home to its own variation of American BBQ focusing on tri tip steak.  Some places have more traditional BBQ elements as well. The Eaten Path has a great collection on the genre from Serious Eats.
Nipomo, CA (near Santa Maria, CA)
Jocko’s Steak House -125 North Thompson Avenue, Nipomo, CA (805) 929-35650-tri tip and garlic bread, veggies, and lots more included.  Baked Beans are supposed to be great.
Paleteria Neveria Linda Michoacan -917 N. Broadway-Santa Maria, CA 93454 805.928.8225-insane amount of crazy flavor ice cream bars
Pomona, CA (near Chino, Halfway between LA and San Bernadino)
Characters Sports Bar-276 E 1st St, Pomona, CA 91766 (909) 622-9070 features occasional touring bands.
Venues-Glass House-200 W 2nd St, Pomona, CA 91766
(877) 435-9849


Solvang, CA

This place is a total tourist trap, a faux danish town that was supposedly started as a utopia.  But it is so strange and touristy, I highly recommended stopping here.  While here, visit the Solvang Restaurant and try one of their Aebleskivers, which is basically a pancake, but in ball form.  There are tons of varieties



Visalia, CA (halfway bet LA and SF)

Cellar Door-101 West Main Street, Visalia, CA 93291
(559) 636-9463


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